10114_zardesdonovan_isi_mlsmj080214134 Michael Janosz/isiphotos.com
30 for October

Landon Donovan, Gyasi Zardes, and 28 More

Illustrious contributing writer Jon Arnold picks his 30-man roster for the upcoming United States national team camp. He keeps it plain and simple, which is why we like him so much.
BY Jon Arnold Posted
October 01, 2014
12:00 PM
I think this is going to be a very weird roster from Jurgen Klinsmann, but I'd play it a little more straight:


1. Brad Guzan
2. Nick Rimando
3. Bill Hamid

Nothing much to see here. Guzan and Rimando are the clear-cut leaders at the moment, and I favor Hamid over Sean Johnson. Cody Cropper isn't quite ready yet and can get a look for Europe-based matches in the future. My prompt says to write who should get the call, and MLS should be on a break. Don't we say this annually? I know it's not easy with the World Cup and everything, but come on. Sorry Real Salt Lake and D.C. United. You must part with your keepers.


4. Fabian Johnson
5. Timmy Chandler
6. Greg Garza
7. Matt Besler
8. Omar Gonzalez
9. DeAndre Yedlin
10. John Brooks
11. Tim Ream
12. Eric Lichaj
13. DaMarcus Beasley

Johnson is the first name on the sheet here and Chandler looks to finally become a regular. I've long held Greg Garza as the prime candidate for 2018 left back—he brings much of the same attacking ability Edgar Castillo did to Tijuana but has the physical attributes that help him be a much better defender.

We need some center backs, so I brought Besler, Gonzalez, and Brooks plus Tim Ream. Followers of my excellent account on the social media site Twitter.com will note I have omitted Michael Orozco from the list. Somebody had to make way for DaMarcus Beasley who I want to be there simply because he and Landon Donovan go way back and I think it would be nice to see them on the field together in Hartford. Call him in for the first game and bring Orozco for the second—or whatever.

Eric Lichaj is getting regular games—let's see what he can do in the U.S. shirt. I'm not convinced he's an option for Klinsmann like some are but Ecuador's attack will provide some quick answers.


14. Landon Donovan
15. Michael Bradley
16. Mix Diskerud
17. Alejandro Bedoya
18. Joe Corona
19. Joe Gyau
20. Graham Zusi
21. Julian Green
22. Maurice Edu
23. Jermaine Jones
24. Luis Gil
25. Emerson Hyndman
26. Alfredo Morales

I'm not going to pretend I've seen Miguel Ibarra for more than 20 minutes. I have no idea if he should get a call or not. I guess I'll join Klinsmann on the Alfredo Morales bandwagon, but I'm more interested in seeing Joe Gyau again. We've got Luis Gil pretty high in the ASN 100, so it's time for him to get integrated. I wrestled with calling Jermaine Jones because he's just finding a rhythm with his club and we already know what we're going to get from him, but I think his experience will be helpful for the young bucks and again he's a guy who has seen some serious time with Landon Donovan—as is Bradley who is still a given even if his post-World Cup play has been subpar.

Hopefully Julian Green is fit and ready to go so he and Landon Donovan can play together and soccer Twitter spends the next five months analyzing what it means when the one pass Donovan doesn't complete during the match is the one he tried to send to Green.

On a more serious tip, I think Diskerud needs to continue getting matches against top competition if he's going to factor because I don't think he's getting that in Norway, and I've been pretty impressed with Joe Corona's play under his new manager at Tijuana.


27. Jozy Altidore
28. Clint Dempsey
29. Gyasi Zardes
30. Andrew Wooten

Altidore and Dempsey are givens. Johannsson and Boyd would be here if they were fit, but they aren't. It gives us a chance to see if Zardes can actually hack it with the national team or if his success is the product of playing with Robbie Keane, Donovan, and the rest of Los Angeles' attacking crew. Wooten has been tearing it up in Europe and seems to have a bit of versatility that other forwards might not. His success deserves a call and a look—who knows? Maybe you've found another option up top, which would certainly be a welcome addition to the U.S. pool.

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